The Broncos and quarterback Peyton Manning had a Super Bowl to forget, but not a Super Bowl they think they can afford to ignore.
Manning and Broncos quarterbacks coach Greg Knapp made watching the tape of their loss to the Seahawks their first priority when they got together on the first day of offseason work, reasoning that enough time had passed for the pain to dissipate — while also reasoning that if they didn’t examine why their offense struggled so much against the Seahawks’ defense, they wouldn’t know how to fix it when they face the Seahawks again in Week Three of the regular season.
“The first day back in the building, we watched the Super Bowl,” Knapp told ESPN. “I told him the day after the game we were going to watch it when he came back, not right then, but the first day he was back, and we were going to watch it without the emotion of what just happened. And that was step one.”
Manning said he doesn’t think he can get better until he identifies where he went wrong.
“If you ever feel like that’s not important — like, ‘Hey, I don’t need to watch last season; I know what we did; I know what I did wrong’ — no, you don’t know,” Manning said. “You need to watch it. Watch the bad plays. It’s not fun to watch bad plays, to sit there and say, ‘That’s a bad decision’ and ‘That’s a really bad decision’ and ‘Horrible read.’ . . . No matter how old you are, you need to go into that prepared to be constructively criticized and learn how to grow out of the mistakes every year.”
That’s the right approach. Even if it was the least enjoyable film session of Manning’s career.